SAMH was founded in the aftermath of the largest mass shooting in the history of the United States, October 1, 2017 at the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival in Las Vegas. As a survivor, Mark Lacy has struggled with PTSD, anxiety, depression and suicidal ideation.  While in Puerto Penasco listening to the Backroads band, he felt as if “The lights turned back on.” That moment served as a pivotal shift in his journey to acceptance and peace of mind.  Mark thought if music can help him “as stubborn as I am”, maybe it can help others heal. He also saw the positive effect of music for his wife, Misty Lacy and her friend, Jane Power, who were with him at the shooting in Las Vegas and have struggled with their own battles following the events that night. As a longtime resident of Arizona and a proud Veteran, these experiences lead Mark to found Southern Arizona Musicians for Healing.

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Mark is a 20 year U.S. Air Force Law Enforcement veteran who severed in Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Central America.  The Foundation was created after Mark and his wife, Misty, survived the Las Vegas Route 91 Harvest Music Festival mass shooting. Mark suffers from and is currently being treated for PTSD brought on by the violent crime he experienced in Las Vegas, Nevada.